Home News COVID-19 Situation Chaves County remains in Yellow Level

Chaves County remains in Yellow Level


Copyright © 2021 Roswell Daily Record

All but three counties in New Mexico are now in the low-risk Turquoise Level of the state’s COVID-19 risk assessment system after Wednesday’s update, and Chaves County stands alone in the high-risk Yellow Level.

Two counties — Catron and Valencia — are at the medium-risk Green Level. None are in the high-risk Red Level.

In the latest assessment period, April 20 to May 3, Chaves County met only one of the metrics in the revised assessment system with a test positivity rate of 4.25%, below the state’s target of 5% or less but an increase from the previous two-week period when it was 3.66%.

The county had an average of 11.7 new cases of COVID-19 per day per 100,000 people, above the target of 10 or fewer and an increase from 10.5 in the previous period.

On the third and newest metric, the percentage of the eligible population that is fully vaccinated, Chaves County is at 31.1%, missing the target of 40%.

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Although the seven other counties in the New Mexico Department of Health’s southeast region are at the Turquoise Level, only one met the state’s vaccination target, Lincoln County at 43%. DeBaca County is at 36%. Quay County is at 32%, followed by Chaves and Lea counties at 31%. Curry County is at 29%, Eddy at 27% and Roosevelt at 23%.

Those counties reached the Turquoise Level when the state applied revised metrics to the assessment system and they had met the criteria for the Green Level for two consecutive assessment periods.

Because southeast New Mexico is behind most of the state’s other counties in vaccination rates, NMDOH will focus efforts on this region, Dr. Tracie Collins, secretary of health, said.

“We are working to provide more information and evidence to the southeast region, given what we’re seeing with vaccination rates. DOH will be taking some trips down there and we’re setting up more access to vaccine,” she said.

Collins and Dr. David Scrase, secretary of human services, said the state is aware that people in the region might be crossing the borders to get vaccinated in Texas. They encouraged people doing so to register with the state’s vaccine website, www.cvvaccine.nmhealth.org, and indicate they have received a vaccine.

“That’s a really easy way to bring county vaccinations up, is to identify those people who’ve gotten the vaccine elsewhere,” Scrase said.

Collins said the state has requested information from Texas on how many New Mexicans have received at least one dose in Texas but has not yet gotten a response.

From data the Department of Health does have, Scrase said, it appears that the percentage of people getting vaccinated out of state is in the single digits.

In its daily case update Wednesday, NMDOH reported 214 new cases of COVID-19 in the state, with one in Chaves County.

The total number of cases in the state is 198,781. Chaves County’s total is 8,930.

Two deaths were reported in Wednesday’s update, a man in his 80s from Bernalillo County and a woman in her 60s from Roosevelt County. Both had been hospitalized and had underlying health conditions. The state’s total number of deaths is 4,085 including 170 in Chaves County.

As of Wednesday, 144 people are hospitalized for COVID-19 in the state.

City/RISD reporter Juno Ogle can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 205, or reporter04@rdrnews.com.

To keep up with local coverage of the coronavirus, go to rdrnews.com/category/news/covid-19-situation/.

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